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Yes, bisexuality exists, it’s not ‘just a phase’—these bi personalities stress yet again

By Brooke Villanueva Published Sep 23, 2021 9:39 pm

We’ve come a long way in the fight for LGBTQIA+ acceptance, but that doesn’t mean it’s over.

I studied in exclusive all-girls schools until college and I’ve somehow been exposed to the community since I was a teenager. Through the years, I’ve seen my perspective on queer individuals change. Being extremely close-minded about it when I was in a Catholic school headed by nuns, I learned how to tolerate them. Eventually, when more and more friends came out to me, I realized tolerance was not enough. I had to figure out how to accept—and embrace—them as they were.

While I can say I’ve been able to do so over time, there are still so many things that I have yet to understand completely. And I know it’s not just me. This Bi Visibility Month, I’d like to focus on an LGBTQIA+ representation that has long been seen as a “gray area” in the spectrum. From my online interviews with some bisexual personalities in the Philippines, I’ve been enlightened about two of the biggest myths and misconceptions about being bi: that it’s “just a phase,” and worse, it “doesn’t exist.”

When singer Mark Bautista came out as bisexual in his autobiography Beyond The Mark (2018), some netizens were quick to say that no one stays bisexual and it was just a phase in his life. “We have to acknowledge the fact that there are people living in this kind of situation and people have different experiences and emotions,” he told PhilSTAR L!fe. “I, particularly, am more interested in connecting to one’s soul rather than the sexuality.”

This was backed by DJ Patty Tiu-Thompson. She used to be in a relationship with DJ Kat De Jesus, but she is now happily married to DJ Mark Thompson. “Before, people would ask me, ‘Ano ba talagang gusto mo?’ Ang gulo mo naman!’” she recalled. “Some would say you’re either gay or straight, and you have to choose and stay there. No, it doesn’t matter who I like—may it be a man or a woman.”

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A post shared by Patty Tiu-Thompson (@pattychooo)

Fil-Canadian YouTube star Mikey Bustos, who came out as bisexual in 2019, didn’t understand which category he belonged in at first. “Many in the LGBT community who have shared their personal stories said they knew right away what sex they were attracted to, but it took me a long time to figure it out,” he said, adding that he only started understanding which part of the spectrum he identifies with in his college years.

For him, the biggest misconception about bisexuality is that there’s no such thing. “If someone is saying they are anything in between, they are lying or are in denial. Bi-erasure is a real danger,” the content creator stressed. Despite the “complexities” that may come with his sexuality, he is extremely proud and happy with it. “In terms of attraction, I get to admire both. It’s a superpower!”

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A post shared by Mikey Bustos (@mikey_bustos)

Bi-erasure has also been experienced by plus-size model Yma Cuervo. When she started dating a guy after being single for a long time, a relative said something along the lines of her being "straight" again. “Who I date doesn’t change the fact that I’m bi,” she stressed, adding that she has learned so many things since she finally came to terms with her sexuality. The most important one, mused Cuervo, is that “not everyone will get you and so we need to let people be their most authentic selves.”

It’s paramount to remember that bisexuality can stand alone in the sexuality spectrum. It’s not some kind of a vague situation that can be erased with a snap of the fingers based on who a bi person chooses to be with.

While sexual identity labels can sometimes make things easier for non-LGBTQIA+ to understand queer individuals and help raise awareness for inclusion and diversity, it doesn’t mean they are limited to labels. After all, only they can make these decisions—we’re just here to support them.

Photos from the subjects' Instagram accounts